I’ve been chased my whole life. As a fugitive refugee in the territory controlled by the tyrannical Mercer corporation, I’ve always had to hide who I am. Until I found Excalibur.Once & Future synopsis
Now I’m done hiding.
My name is Ari Helix. I have a magic sword, a cranky wizard, and a revolution to start.
When Ari crash-lands on Old Earth and pulls a magic sword from its ancient resting place, she is revealed to be the newest reincarnation of King Arthur. Then she meets Merlin, who has aged backward over the centuries into a teenager, and together they must break the curse that keeps Arthur coming back. Their quest? Defeat the cruel, oppressive government and bring peace and equality to all humankind.
You had me at queer genderbent King Arthur. I was almost instantly interested in this book. An interest that only grew after I finished The Lost Coast by Amy Rose Capetta. I am not fully sure what I expected from this when I started, but to laugh so much was not it.
This book was much more comedic than either the description nor the premise led me to believe. For the most part this humour is the perfect touch. There are though a few parts where I felt the absurdity took away from the overall plot.
This book in the end deals a lot with family, home, and core identity of who we are when these things are taken from us. The Similarities between Merlin and Ari are poignant and make us think. The greyness of everyone’s morality is spot on.
This book goes beyond just being a retelling of King Arthur and strides right into how easily good and evil can be marked upon someone. This is especially seen through the histories of Morgana, Merlin and the Lady of the Lake.
With an expert precision every time a question is answered Cori McCarthy and Amy Rose Capetta leave us with even more questions than before. Don’t be put off by the light tone this book has especially in the beginning, it’s not afraid to hit hard at times and go dark places.
One complaint I have seen is that this book is “too gender diverse/sexuality diverse” and that makes it “unrealistic”. This is, to me, untrue, for me (and probably many other queers) what I read was my group of friend and found family. Queer bunch up and stick together, which it appears confuses the hetero cisgendered folks.
Overall I loved this book and cannot wait for the sequel is it 2020 yet?